CHICAGO (CBS) — Gas prices are finally coming down – and quickly.
As CBS 2’s Roseanne Tellez reports, prices at pumps in Chicago are nearly 10 cents a gallon cheaper than just one week ago.
Experts predict prices will continue to drop and there are a few reasons.
The biggest one right now is the change of season. When the leaves start to fall, so do the gas prices. The end of summer also brings an end to the required summer blend of gasoline.
“Every time you get rid of that summer blend of gasoline, you’re going to knock off 10 to 15 cents a gallon,” said analyst Phil Flynn.
A sharp drop in gas prices started Sept. 15 – the day companies retired the expensive summer blends for the year. The price of gas is down nine cents in the past week in Chicago and more than 17 cents lower compared to a month ago.
Flynn said he thinks gas prices will continue to come down.
“I think we could see gasoline prices fall another 10 to 25 cents a gallon. So we’re talking about a significant drop,” Flynn said.
Summer blend aside, Flynn said that outside forces have kept prices at the pump artificially high.
“When we had these tropical storms, that impacted gas prices,” he said.
Problems at local refineries also took a toll.
Consumers, many of whom have no choice but to gas up, have had it.
“It’s been really tough,” said motorist Devin Withey. “It’s a drain on your wallet and it’s never a good thing.”
Fellow motorist Tony Marconia said, “I travel like 20 miles to work and 20 miles back, and so the gas prices are really important to me.”
Nationwide, prices are down and – Flynn says – so is demand.
“In fact, over the last five months, gasoline demand has fallen more than it ever has in this country since they’ve been keeping records,” Flynn said.
The one benefit of the recent high prices could be that Americans are looking at alternative fuels more seriously than ever.
Flynn said he truly believes this is the beginning of a historic change.